Monday, August 27, 2018


Dear Friends...

It's been a long, long time since I've written on my old Blog.  This is a longer post and I hope you will read it through to the end...

  So much has been going on in my life.  If I'm being honest, I just didn't want to make the effort to actually put my thoughts into written form.  And so, I didn't.  I've been on such a difficult journey since last Christmas Eve and unless you've traveled a similar path of losing a parent or loved one unexpectedly (or not!), I guess, you can't imagine the sorrow and heartbreak of it all.

Especially if you had a mother like I did.

She wasn't perfect.  But, she was wonderful.

I'll just be going about doing everyday things...when out of nowhere a tiny thought or memory will bloom into unrelenting grief.  

The tears flow.  The sorrow has beaten me down.  It's overwhelmed me.

I think of my mother a lot.  She's been gone 8 months now and soon her ashes will be buried next to my late father.  We've chosen a small, historic military cemetery for their resting place and before long my siblings and I will gather together again, on what would have been my mom's 84th birthday.

We will say one more final goodbye...

My momma lived on a meager income.  I've shared that before.  She had no stocks, bonds and very, little savings.  To help make ends-meet she would sometimes ask me to offer her beautiful handwork (crochet) to my customers.  So, in early December of last year I posted a FOR SALE notice to Facebook for the only two Bitty Baby Dolls she had fashioned outfits for in white.  Both were dressed in lovely crocheted dresses with little booties and tiny bonnets to match.  I was so happy when one of my customers (going way back to my early eBay days!) wanted them both for her two young granddaughters.  If I remember correctly they were going to be Christmas presents...

My mom was thrilled.  Overjoyed.  When I gave her the money for the Bitty Baby Dolls she smiled as only she could.  A hundred bucks goes a long way when you shop the dollar store for bargains and peruse the sale aisle at Hobby Lobby for goodies marked down to 80% off.  That's how she afforded to give EVERYONE in her family lovely Christmas and birthday gifts each and every year.

In spite of the wonderful sale for my mom, you can imagine how heartbroken I was when only two weeks later she passed away.  Among her simple possessions and longtime keepsakes, she had a small collection of Bitty Babies (her favorites and most detailed as she would say!).  She had kept four or five back just for herself.

I loved them all...but I couldn't help but think about the two I had just sold for her...and how much I wanted to ask for them back.   Of the ones she had kept, none were dressed in white.  Those had been the most intricate.  The most sought after.  She routinely made them for Christening, Baptismal and Baby Dedication gifts and often sold them through my sister's Parish.  She had promised to make me a special one for my birthday that was coming up in a few weeks...

But...time ran out, I guess.  I never did get my Bitty Baby Doll dressed all in white.

Fast forward to early summer of this year.  Just a few weeks ago.

Every once in awhile one of my buyers (or friends and friends of friends!) will contact me with things they are wanting to unload.  Generally it's fabric, lace and trims that have been well loved by family or friends. Oftentimes it's because they are downsizing, someone passed away, or they are just clearing things out and don't know what to do with the excess.  Most feel their treasured keepsakes and collections are too special to donate to the local thrift store and/or don't want to hassle with resale or selling on Etsy or eBay.  I've been blessed over the years to be the recipient of such wonderful gifts which have come to me by several very generous women.  Because I re-purpose vintage trims, laces and ribbons I guess my name has popped up more times than not...for that I'm beyond grateful.
 Sweet note from Catherine...
Lovely old crochet... 
 Beautiful trim...
Love this beaded piece...

In early June one of my Facebook Followers/Bloggers sent me some incredible laces and trims (above).  She was so loving and kind and I have great plans for the special pieces she sent my way.  Her name is Catherine Costanza and her kindness and generosity helped me get through the first summer I've ever spent without my mom...  Thank you, Catherine!  You Bless Me!
 From Maureen...gorgeous...high-end and rare handwork!
 Love this lovely pull-work!
 I use this style a lot!
Beautiful Barkcloth Roses...

Then...even earlier last year, another friend, this one named Maureen Reid, gifted me with breathtaking fabrics and vintage linens (above) as she had gotten out of the retail/resale business.  She has returned to England with her ailing hubby and my thoughts and prayers are always with her.  Maureen was and is a gifted artisan and I've been fortunate to love and admire her work now for many, many years.  Thank you for blessing me, friend.  I adore you.  
Huge Box of EVERYTHING from Kim!

 In late July one of my dearest (and longtime) customers contacted me to let me know she was clearing linens and laces out in her home and asked me if I would be interested in her collection.  I replied with a resounding YES and on Saturday a huge box was deposited upon my doorstep.  I was eager and excited to open the thing up, because given the fabulous taste of Kim Osborn, I just knew
beautiful treasures awaited me.
 The box was jammed full of everything you can imagine!
 Lace doilies, vintage clothing, table runners, embroidered linens...
 Cut-work lace, vintage trims, incredible crochet...
It's been a long time since I've seen this much QUALITY lace and linen pieces all in one place. 
 Love this...
 Beautiful old camisole...
 Lovely tablecloth...
 Antique bloomers....
Love to use this crochet trim on Aprons!
 Stacks and stacks of beautiful things...
 And more...

Haven't seen these in many a moon!

Something happens once in awhile that stirs within your spirit feelings so overwhelming and amazing that you just must share.  For what I'm going to show you next brought me to my knees.

 Kim was the one who had purchased the Bitty Babies from my momma.  As much as I wanted to ask to buy them back from her, I just couldn't bring myself to make such a request.  I could only envision her giving them to her little granddaughters and how sad they would be to have to give them up.

I just couldn't ask her to return them.  

And so I prayed.  I asked God if it was possible to ever have the Dollies back that  I would do better about being a more generous and giving person myself.  I knew if Kim could let them go, she would.  And so...I let the matter rest.

Eight months later my prayer was answered.  Kim sent me the note below.
A precious friend...

If you don't know this about me, well...let me just tell you...I can be VERY emotional.  I love deep and I trust hard and falling to my knees in gratefulness has become a weekly occurrence in my life of late.  But NOTHING could have prepared me for the shock and disbelief I felt when I opened up the box tied up with the little white bow.  

Quite simply...I was overcome.

I'm sure Kim had no idea when she packed those Bitty Babies into the box of old linens and trims that I would be moved directly into the presence of The Most High.  Without her knowing...God used her inner beauty and grace to shine light into some very dark days.

I'm forever grateful.  Thank you, Kim...  You will never know how much you have touched my heart.  You will just never know.  I will remember your kindness to me all my days.

When my momma died my siblings and I calmly and lovingly shared all her keepsakes and belongings.  Selfishly, I wanted everything.  We all did...

I wanted the brush with her hair still caught amongst the bristles...I wanted her jewelry and her, letters and precious momentos...

Sharing is hard.  And choosing what to choose is even harder.

We all loved her so much.

Through my mother's death I've learned a great deal about her life.  Her faith.  Her talents. I know today she intercedes to the Father for me.  I feel her presence every day...  But, as much as I have learned about her...I think I've learned more about myself.

There are people out there like Catherine, Maureen and Kim (and many more before them!) that have far bigger hearts than I do and sometimes gazing upon your own imperfect refection is beyond difficult.  I've been reminded that when I hear that still-small-voice inside me that says
"Do It!" 
"Share It!" 
"Give It!"
that it's God asking me to be his hands and feet...

Maybe like Catherine, Maureen and Kim...a little at a time...I can do my part to bring joy, happiness and love into someone else's life.  I'm sure I can't change the world.  Or even my state or town.  But, maybe I can bring a tiny bit of hope and grace into the heart of the lonely, discouraged, overwhelmed and oppressed~

I hope so.

I've missed you all so much.

Love to you...


Sunday, February 18, 2018



In the midst of the brokenness brought about by the recent passing of my mother, God has truly been faithful in one amazing, miraculous way.

He's restored her family.

I won't go into the back story because right now all that needs to be shared is that forgiveness has been sought and given, and most importantly...

Love has won.

Reconciliation was the cry of my mother's heart and she's witnessed restoration among her children from the best vantage point possible...



If you've lost a parent, then you know going though their home is probably the most difficult of all the things a child must do, save for maybe planning a funeral and burying them.  My mother had only meager fare.  As many of you may remember, my father was a clergyman and they lived on a very modest income.  When my dad died almost four years ago he left her with financial debt and almost nothing to live on, but his paltry social security.  She had no house, no savings, no investments and no retirement.  That said, she did have a few minor treasures and handmade heirlooms and all of her children longed to call them their own.

My siblings and I breathed in deep at what was before us when we walked into her tiny home.  While going through our mother's humble possessions we opted to leave the task of dividing up precious cedar chest keepsakes for last.  As we opened up the lid to the tattered trunk, the one that was years older than I am, we all knelt silently around it for each of us knew it held what meant the most to her...the best of all she had.  We didn't really know what we would find...what she had kept...all she had held closest to her heart.

Inside we found love letters from my father...written when in the Navy and she was pregnant with my oldest sister.  They had yet to be married a year.  He would miss her birth as he was out to sea...  She bore their first child alone.  

I can only imagine.

There were small quilts and outfits she'd made for each of her babies, our baby shoes, our favorite toys, her baby book and her mother's baby book.

Our original expertly crocheted baby bibs, bottle covers were there (very discolored and worn) along with old greeting cards, report cards, photos and so much more. 
ADRIENNE (daughter)

We also found our uniforms for Girl Scouts, Brownies and my brother's Boy Scout uniform in the bottom of the chest...everything was there...the belts, ties, sashes, socks, caps, berets, badges, pins, etc.  Everything.

My beautiful mother wasn't a hoarder...but she was a saver.  She saved the best of all she had and the very things she knew her children would want...

God Bless her.

My precious, niece, Bridgy, is ten and is in Girl Scouts today.  I sent my uniform home with my younger, sister, Jen, in hopes it would fit her and incredibly it does.  One more year and it would have probably been too small.  I can't begin to tell you the overwhelming JOY I carry in my heart seeing this beautiful, beautiful little girl wearing a part of me.  Yesterday she wore this very vintage uniform while selling GS Cookies for her local troop.  I don't know about you, but if I saw a young Scout today in a vintage uniform I would certainly buy MORE cookies than I had planned to buy!  She looked so precious! She is an amazing little girl and I'm thrilled to be a part of her life.  I'm praying for God to raise her up to become the woman one day He wants her to be!

I don't have a picture of me in my GS uniform, but, I do have one of my big sister and I taken in our uniforms back when she was a Girl Scout and I was a Brownie.  Amazingly, my Momma still had it after all these years...

I guess if I've learned one thing since my Mother's death it might be this...

Praying matters.

My Mother was a prayer warrior and she never stopped praying for those she loved, especially for her babies.  She prayed for years that her children would come together and stop squabbling over things that were not eternal.  We've always loved each other...I suppose the scars from life just run deep sometimes.

My brother-in-love, Rob, said it best~ 

"When that cedar chest was opened something spiritual happened!"

I believe he was right.  It was like the spirit of God was set free and His mighty hand passed over all four of us kids in a profound way.

I know today, without a shadow of a doubt, my beautiful Momma is at rest...

Thank you, Mom.  Even in death you have never stopped interceding to the Father for your children.  Thank you for saving back so much of our childhood for us and for allowing us to take a look back into your private life as a young wife and mother.  I want you to know your prayers mattered.

I hope if any of you reading this today, who might need to seek peace or restoration within friends or family, you will do it.  It takes courage and it is sometimes difficult.  But, with God's help, you can do it.

It's worth it.  I promise you, it is.

Love to you this beautiful Sunday...


Friday, February 16, 2018


 Yesterday I spent some time working on my Booths here in Oklahoma...I have two and these days they are both looking quite empty.  Since the death of my mother on Christmas Eve I haven't wanted to work.  I've been overwhelmed with sorrow and irritated at how my life has changed.

I don't believe my mom wanted to leave this world.  She loved her children and I knew she wanted to stay here with us.  But, her body was beginning to fail her and I could tell she was growing tired.  Life was getting difficult and the little things we all take for grated were starting to wear her down.  I've tried to find some measure of joy in her reuniting with my father...he passed four years ago on the 20th of this month, but honestly, that brings little comfort to me. 
 I don't want her to be with him...or her father or mother...

I want her with me.

Selfish.  I know.

But, true.

Death is hard.  

When Spring arrives in a few weeks my siblings and I will bury our parents together in a small historic military cemetery in Oklahoma City.  My beautiful mother was fiercely patriotic and I believe she would be pleased with our selection.  Her growing family will again gather to celebrate her life and the man she remained faithful to since 1955.

She LOVED America and proudly wore her sparkly USA pin everyday!  She hated seeing what was happening to our nation and the political divide across our country.

With the recent violence in Florida and the death of all the children (and those fighting to protect them) it is literally incomprehensible for me to even process the entire event let alone the violence.  The passing of innocent people has caused me to question God about my own existence and to seek answers regarding it that I know I can only find in Him.

Despite being sidelined with my own unbelievable grief, I know the family members of the people killed in that horrible massacre are suffering on a level I have never personally known.  Their sorrow cannot be measured...

My heart is breaking for them all.
May God have mercy on us all.

Heal our Hearts.

Heal our Land.

Love to you...


Sunday, January 28, 2018


My days and nights are running together since the passing of my beautiful Mom last Christmas Eve.  The last several weeks have been difficult.
I am sad.  I feel lonely.  The tears won't stop flowing and I can't help but wonder if the pain in my chest will ever end.


The following obituary was written by my sister, Jennifer, and appeared in the Sunday Oklahoman, January 28, 2018.

He will gather, He will gather
The gems for His kingdom,
All the pure ones, all the bright ones,
His loved and His own.
Like the stars of the morning,
His bright crown adorning,
They shall shine in their beauty,
Bright gems for His crown.

–William Cushing, 1856

Barbara Helen Martin Elliott was born October 1, 1934 in Carbondale Illinois, and died on Christmas Eve 2017, in Edmond, Oklahoma. She was the eldest daughter of Phillip Webster Martin and Bertie Bain Martin.

Barbara lived in Carbondale until the age of 12. She loved school and was an outstanding student. At the age of 5, she accepted Jesus into her heart and began her lifelong journey as a Christian. She was her grandfather’s favorite and he was instrumental in her salvation. Later, Barbara was instrumental in the salvation of her entire family.

In 1946, the family moved to Southern California. In 1952, Barbara graduated from Excelsior High School. She was a member of Art Club and National Honor Society.

Following high school, she worked as a secretary. She loved dating, fashion and church. In October 1955, she met a sailor, William Elliott, at the Bellflower Church of the Nazarene. They married six weeks later. Of this union was born four children who gave her 10 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. All were her crown and glory.

Despite her small, fixed income, she never forgot anyone’s birthday and shopped sales all year so she could give everyone a Christmas present. She supported numerous charities.

Barbara was a working mother. She worked for the La Puente School District, CA; International Students, Inc., CO and Washington County, OK. Her biggest job, however, was as a Nazarene preacher’s wife. She was devoted to her calling. She served with her husband through pastorates in Galveston, Kermit and Gilmer TX; Ozark, AR; Caney, KS and Bartlesville. The rural church scene was a mission field marked by low wages and poverty. She shined through the sacrifices. She hosted showers, potlucks, sang and played piano. She loved supporting Nazarene missionaries. To encourage people to read missionary books, she created a poster featuring paper crowns. Everyone who signed up to read books got a crown. When you finished a book, she added a little plastic jewel to your crown. Our dear mother has now received the imperishable crowns that heaven bestows.

Barbara was a talented artist. She quilted, crocheted, painted, sewed and knitted. She was the world’s best Girl Scout leader. She was a prayer warrior who spent hours in prayer every day for her family. When she saw War Room, she cheered in ovation at the end. She was an amazing Sunday School teacher who taught the Gospel to children with the Wordless Book. This is her greatest legacy: A devout follower of Jesus Christ. If you are reading this, she would want you to know she loved you, because she loved everyone.

Barbara was 83, but she died unexpectedly, at home. She died doing what she loved: Keeping busy and anticipating celebrating our Lord’s birth with her children and grandchildren. All who loved her are devastated by the loss, but rejoice that she joined Jesus on his birthday. She will remain with him throughout eternity.

Throughout her life, Barbara spoke of the babies she lost in miscarriage. The moment she died she held them in her arms for the first time. This makes her happier than words can possibly say.
The family thanks Oklahoma Heart Hospital and Dr. John M. Williams for 14 years of care. Thank you for all the times you saved her.

Mom is survived by her children, Faith Bybee, Dickson, TN; Rebecca Nelson, and husband Steven, Edmond; William Elliott, and wife Ginger, West Covina, CA; Jennifer McCollum and husband Robert, OKC. Grandkids, Jayson Bybee, April Tummins, Cathrine Holloway, TN; Brandon Nelson, AL; Adrienne Weigel, Edmond; Bethany Lyons, Brittany Diamond, SD; Juliette James (Nanny’s “Angel”), Sullivan and Bridgette McCollum, OKC; seven great-grandchildren; dog Missy, and sisters Phyllis and Cherryle. She was preceded in death by her parents; son-in-law Greg Bybee, and husband, William Elliott.

Rest in peace dear Momma, Grandma, Nanny.

Wait for us. We will be with you soon.

Thursday, January 11, 2018


Dear Friends...
(My thoughts from Facebook)

The past couple of weeks have been beyond difficult for me as I breathed in deep and restarted my life without the physical presence of my precious Mom. Thank you all for your kind words and the grace and love you've extended to my family during this sorrow-filled time in our lives. The cards, notes, food, flowers (and even the FB comments) have meant so much to me. I don't know how I will go on...but I know I will

It's what my Mom would have wanted.

Yesterday I looked for simple response/thank you cards that would be appropriate to send out to those who blessed us with their presence at her service and sent flowers and cards. I couldn't find ANY. So frustrating. Those I found were cheap and way too generic for me. I wanted something lovely for my Momma...something I believe she would have given out herself. So, last night I worked on several designs and came up with this soft pink heart and the sentiment included at the bottom (from Lauren Eden) somehow made me smile. is hard! Isn't it? I'm so grateful I'm not walking through this life alone. I'd never make it. My loving, faithful Savior is by my side.

I hope to be back doing what I love before too long.  My two booths here in Oklahoma (Edmond and Moore) are bare to the bone and even though I would love to stay in my bed with the covers over my head, I can't.  We depend on my income so I must TRY and get back to work.

  I will MISS my Momma sharing EVERY POST I made. She was always so proud of my work. She taught me all I know...she was my advantage.

Love to you all...

 PS:  The cards aren't for sale.  I just wanted to share them with you...<3 span="">

Tuesday, January 9, 2018


 My Beautiful Momma
(Celebrating Another Grandchild's Wedding)

It's been a really long time since I looked at my old blog and even longer since I cared about sharing my thoughts with you. 

My Blog.

Funny how the one thing that once brought me so much joy...the thing my heart was truly wrapped up in and sang aloud for...the thing that became so much of my daily focus...the thing that brought incredible purpose and meaning to my life, one day just began to slowly fade away into pretty much nothingness.

Not sure what happened.  
Things just change, I guess.
My Mom's Family
(Aunt Lil, Mom, Grandpa, Grandma, Great-Grandma
Cousin Larry, Sister, Sister)

Blog or no blog, over the years I have changed and with each passing day I feel myself changing more and more.  But, nothing has wrought within me a bigger change than the loss of my dearest friend, confidant and mentor, my Mother.
 Me In My Momma's Arms
(My Mother, Me, Grandmother, Great-Grandmother 
and Big Sister, Linda)

Her name was Barbara Helen Martin Elliott and she passed away early Christmas Eve morning at the age of 83. 

To tell you I'm irrevocably broken over her death can't even begin to describe the pain I carry inside my heart.  My Momma had a tough life...she deserved more and I prayed God would give her more.  I asked Him time and time again to fill her coffers with all things good and lovely and He did.  But, I wanted more for her.
My Brother's Wedding
Mom, Sister Linda, Daughter Adrienne, Grandma & Me)

An easier time.
Less sorrow.
Financial freedom.
Restoration of her family.
A healed heart.
  Son's Wedding Celebration Luncheon
(Daughter-in-Love, Miss K, Me & Momma)

My Mother lived with heart disease for many years and although her death was unexpected, I knew she was growing weaker and the chances of her living to the age of 92, like her own Mother, were fairly small.  Still I prayed for her to stay with me...selfishly, I wanted her to remain a physical presence in my life.

There were so many things I still wanted her to teach me.
So many things I still needed to learn.
My Momma at Two

As my three siblings and I worked to clear out her home over holiday break I became overwhelmed with grief.  It came in the knowing she would never see with earthly eyes the sun come up on another Christmas morning...or feel the beautiful breeze of one more first day of spring.  She wouldn't be here to witness the first of many red robins confidently perched outside my kitchen window, make another heirloom quality baby quilt and most of all, wouldn't be here to celebrate with me the birth of my next grandchild.

I didn't know how I could go on.
My Mother with my Sister Linda

But, as I've known since I was a young child, God is both faithful and full of mercy.  Somehow, within my own crushed and battered spirit, He allowed my Mother to come to me.  She came to me in the words of the one song she said she loved to sing most - 
 My Lovely Mother


If the world from you withhold of its silver and its gold,

And you have to get along with meager fare,

Just remember, in His Word, how He feeds the little bird—

Take your burden to the Lord and leave it there.

Leave it there, leave it there,

Take your burden to the Lord and leave it there;

If you trust and never doubt, He will surely bring you out—

Take your burden to the Lord and leave it there.

If your body suffers pain and your health you can’t regain,

And your soul is almost sinking in despair,

Jesus knows the pain you feel, He can save and He can heal—

Take your burden to the Lord and leave it there.

When your enemies assail and your heart begins to fail,

Don’t forget that God in Heaven answers prayer;

He will make a way for you and will lead you safely through—

Take your burden to the Lord and leave it there.

When your youthful days are gone and old age is stealing on,

And your body bends beneath the weight of care;

He will never leave you then, He’ll go with you to the end—

Take your burden to the Lord and leave it there.

 A Pastor's Wife
(Preggo with Sister Jennifer)

My Mother's unwavering faith has sustained me throughout my life and I owe her more than I can say~ Her voice, though sweetly ordinary, gave to me endless gifts... The early teaching of Bible stories and simple songs will never end and the melody of love that lived within her will never die.  Truth will live on in her children...and in their children and in their children...
My Parents When I Was A Teen

Two-thousand seventeen was a tough year.  I had spine surgery in March, our beloved 14+ year old Yorkie, Mollie, passed away in August, our dearly loved brother-in-love succumbed in October after a massive stroke and then my precious Mother has journeyed to heaven in December.  With each challenge and loss I've somehow remained grateful to God for sustaining me and giving me the a perfect peace found only in Him.  But...the losses have been very, very hard.
Our Last Professional Family Photo 1992
Jennifer, Linda, Bill, Dad, Mom, Me
Mom and I About 4 Years Ago

In closing...

So, to the woman who gave me life...

"Thank you, Mom! You gave me so much more than I ever realized.  Thank you for those years of early instruction, for the faith you carried within your heart in spite of knowing of your own imperfection.  Your belief in me has carried me for all my 59 years and I trust you will continue to guide me until I reunite with you on the other side.  I thank God today for giving you 83 plus years!  I will miss your physical presence for all my days and will bless you for the remainder of my life.  I love you...Becky"


About my Blog...well...I don't know.  I may just leave it as it is for whomever happens upon it...and then again I may continue.  Time will tell.  I just can't say for sure right now.

In the meantime...
May God bring the path you are to travel this year into focus and the calling on your life clear. 

Love to you all,


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